Lyon’s soon-to-be majority shareholder John Textor held a press conference on Tuesday afternoon alongside Jean-Michel Aulas, in the wake of exclusive negotiations being opened over a takeover.
Textor will buy out the shares of Pathé and IDG, along with a chunk of those held by Aulas’ Holnest, for an initial 66% stake. As transcribed in L’Équipe, the American businessman – who already owns Botafogo in Brazil and is part-owner of Crystal Palace -has big ambitions for the club.
“We want to do something unique. I’m leaving [Jean-Michel Aulas] a lot of freedom because he is very knowledgeable about football and the French market, he knows the business well.”
“I don’t like projects like PSG’s. If we continue to do what Jean-Michel has for several years and that we bring in entertainment and technology, we’ll be able to earn more money that with a Qatari investor.”
“I’ve seen people in Brazil with Crystal Palace shirts and people with Botafogo tops on in a London pub. That’s what I want with Lyon, that there be a community between the fans.”
“Here, Aulas has done a great job with football, basketball all of the infrastructure you see and the women’s team. For us in the United States, that’s amazing. We’re bringing in money with Jamie [Salter] and Bill Foley, two friends. We’re investing with our own money.”